How to keep selective colour in black and white conversions: Steps 10-18
10 Copy and Paste a mask
Choose Layer>New>Adjustment Layer>Levels. Click OK. Alt-click on Layer 1’s mask to see the girl-shaped black brush strokes you created in step 4. Choose Select>All then Edit>Copy. Click on the Levels Adjustment Layer’s mask and choose Edit>Paste to add the same brush strokes to the new mask.
11 Invert the mask
Press Ctrl+I to invert the Levels Adjustment Layer’s mask so that the girl’s shape is white, while the background is black. These white strokes will enable the Levels Adjustment Layer to change the tones of the girl without altering the carefully dodged and burned tones in the rest of the image.
12 Adjust the levels
Click on the Levels Adjustment Layer’s thumbnail (the little cog icon) to see the image layer. In the Levels adjustment panel drag the grey slider left to 1.24 to lighten the girl’s midtones. Drag the white slider left to 236 to brighten her highlights and help her stand out against the dark background.
13 Restore clipped highlights
The highlight Levels adjustment brightens up our subject and gives her more impact, but her white shirt has become clipped. To restore detail to the shirt’s blown-out highlights, grab the Brush tool from the Layers palette. Set Opacity to 50%. Now click on the mask and spray grey strokes on the shirt.
14 More modelling
To emphasise the contours of the girl’s face, increase the contrast between the shadows and highlights. Grab the Burn tool and set Range to Midtones and Exposure to 15%. Set Size to 90 pixels. Click on the grey Dodge and Burn layer. Spray over the shadows on her neck and cheek to darken them.
15 Reduce saturation
The model’s colours are a little too vibrant. To create a more subtle colour palette choose Layer>New Adjustment Layer> Hue/Saturation. Drag this Adjustment Layer to the top of the layer stack. In the adjustment panel, drag the Master Saturation slider down to -21. This creates a moodier look.
16 Go grey
To ‘rough up’ the clean digital image and give the whole thing a more filmic look, choose Layer>New>Layer. In the New Layer window, name the layer ‘Grain’ and click OK. Next, go to Edit>Fill Layer. In the Fill layer window set the Contents Use drop-down menu to 50% Grey. Click OK.
17 Make some noise
Set the Grain layer’s Blending Mode to Overlay so that the neutral grey pixels become invisible. Go to Filter>Noise>Add Noise. Set Amount to 10%. Tick the Monochromatic box. Click OK to apply the noise to the layer. At this stage the noise doesn’t look like film grain, but we’ll fix that in the final step.
18 Create film grain
Go to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur. Set the Blur Radius to 1.0 and click OK. This turns the sharp dots of noise into more organic-looking clumps of grain. To see the grain more effectively, grab the Zoom tool and click to view at 100%. For a more subtle effect, reduce the Grain layer’s Opacity to 70%.